Konigin von Danemark is an old (and great) shrub rose. An Alba to be precise although there is a suspicion that there is some Damask in its parentage. Whatever the case you can often smell this rose before you see it as it is one of the most highly perfumed shrub roses there is. If you want to place single, relatively small cut rose as part of a dinner setting there is none better because not only is Konigen von Danemark scented but it is also perfectly formed. The flowers are medium sized at about 3.5 ins (8cms) in diameter, but they are made up of many petals with that typical 'quartered' appearance found in alba roses.
It blooms freely through the summer carrying a succession of flowers over foliage that has a definite tint of grey mixed in with its green. Ultimately it will make a bush of 5ft (1.5m) tall and nearly as wide.
Old shrub roses are less flashy than some of the hybrid teas and modern shrub cultivars and they can be a bit of an acquired taste. Our recommendation, if you are so minded is that this is a pretty good rose to start with, but if you want to carry on looking then you could do a lot worse than going to our complete list of roses grown in the UK here. And a parting shot - although Konigin von Danemark is nearly 100 years old it is still the proud holder of an RHS Award of Garden Merit, and there are not many roses that can claim that.
Because of its size, Konigin von Danemark can be used pretty much anywhere although it is too large for a container. It tolerates more shade than most roses and can cope with direct light for only half the day which means it will do very well in quite shaded spots. It is one of the most disease free roses we know and its performance is utterly reliable which makes it the perfect filler when you are not quite sure what to plant.
We have a rose border running down the long side of a pergola. It was not well thought out and part of the border is shaded for half the day. Perfect for one of our favourite shrub roses which flowers for all it is worth and fills the pergola with scent for breakfast, lunch, tea and dinner.
Konigin von Danemark which translates as Queen of Denmark was so named in 1826 in Flottbek (near Hamburg) in Germany. It was, however, bred (probably in the very early 1800's) by a Scottish landscaper called Jacob Booth who had been invited to Flottbek in the late 1700's to ply his trade there.
Hamburg fell under Danish control in 1806 and reflecting new patronage, Booth changed its name from Maiden's Blush. The veracity of the breeding of the rose was challenged by the curator of the botanical gardens in Hamburg in 1831 and a furious court case erupted which lasted for three years before it was settled in favour of Booth. For that time, it was the talk of european botanical circles... Ironically, part of the Hamburg Botanical Gardens now stands on the site of the Booth nursery in Hamburg.